Cow vs Kaaba – the missing spine of ‘liberals’ when it comes to Islam

Standard

When a man was killed in Dadri on suspicion of cow slaughter and beef consumption, it elicited, and rightly so, concern and outrage from many. The leading outragers were those who self-identify as “liberals”.

Apart from absolving the state government and taking selfies outside the house of the murdered man, these liberals decided to attack the belief that supposedly was the central reason why the man was killed – the belief that cow is a sacred animal which shouldn’t be slaughtered for food.

In fact, they decided to attack the cow itself, even as they desperately tried to paint every crime as cow related violence. Continue reading

From ‘Church attacks’ to ‘Muslims lynched’ – how the narrative plays part in politics

Standard

Indian National Congress, the grand old party of India, suffered its worst ever electoral defeat in May 2014. Reduced to 44 seats, it was staring at a risk of being pushed to the margins if immediate corrective steps were not taken.

The reasons for its defeat were pretty obvious – corruption charges, anti-incumbency, lackadaisical leadership of Rahul Gandhi, and ‘Modi Wave’.

However, if you think like a pragmatic and seasoned politician, especially one belonging to the Congress party, these reasons don’t warrant any “corrective” steps. They are transient in nature. Continue reading

Did polarization of Hindu votes take place in Uttar Pradesh?

Standard

I was invited to Zee News for discussing assembly election results and there I had the opportunity to talk to Arif Mohammad Khan, who once was a state minister and an active politician, famous for being the Muslim face who quit Congress when Rajiv Gandhi, then enjoying a mammoth majority in Lok Sabha, took steps to overturn the Shah Bano judgment to please Muslim fundamentalists.

As trends appeared to settle down and it looked like BJP was all set to win Uttar Pradesh (and it has swept the elections like the 2014 Lok Sabha elections as I write), some people started talking about kabristan-shamshan and “polarization”. Continue reading

This is why bodies like Muslim Personal Law Board oppose Uniform Civil Code

Standard

One of the oft-repeated arguments put forward against Uniform Civil Code (UCC) is that this is against the fundamental right to practice one’s religion. It is argued that the act of the state to legislate in matters, which ought to be governed through religious texts, is an attack on religious freedom.

Outwardly it might appear so, but in practice, UCC doesn’t take away any religious freedom. Yes, it takes away the rights of religious bodies to control a group – and that’s why those who fancy themselves as representatives or leaders of a religion are opposing it – but it doesn’t strip an individual his freedom to follow certain religious practices or rules. Continue reading

The problem with ‘reforms must come from within among minorities’ argument

Standard

Last week, the government took a stand in the Supreme Court against triple talaq, arguing that such practices were regressive and needed reconsideration. Around the same time, the Law Commission of India issued an appeal (pdf link) seeking public consultation on the issue of Uniform Civil Code (UCC). Continue reading

Which Narendra Modi supporter are you?

Narendra Modi
Standard

People voted for Narendra Modi because they wanted development, they didn’t have any Hindu agenda in mind.” is the latest muse of people who earlier religiously believed that “a vote for Modi means crossing the moral point of no return”.

They are the same people who thought that Modi, with help of Amit Shah, “polarized” Uttar Pradesh to sweep the general elections. Now they think that the elections were won on development agenda.

This U-turn by these alleged “intellectuals” is not surprising as they are experts in shifting goalposts; however, what is consistent are their generalizations.

Earlier a vote for Modi was a vote for fascism, and now a vote for Modi has become a vote for development.

This post is not to analyze what a vote for Narendra Modi meant, because many alleged journalists are analyzing that by writing fat books, hoping to make a fat impression and preferably fat money.

This post is about who voted for Modi. Continue reading